The Grapes of Wrath, by John Steinbeck, IS the American Pain

The Grapes of Wrath IS the American Pain

and Maeve Grant makes you see it, feel it even more through her wonderful multimedia profile of that wonderful masterpiece by John Steinbeck


The Profile

The Grapes of Wrath


One of the best books I’ve read so far, featuring the worst times in America, blessed by John Steinbeck’s magical narrative and descriptive way of screaming out heartless infernal pain in silence, since when we read, we read in silence 🙂

I was 16, fond of internet and I never liked reading books, but with the Grapes of Wrath, it was different. I found this in my father’s bookshelves. Trust me, I’ve read it with tears in my ears in the end and I trust everyone with a heart will as well; for instance, the last paragraphs talked about a man dying of hunger and what a woman had to do to stop him from dying..


The official webmaster of, Mark Negus, send me a personal email and that really touched me; so I decided to post this to my blogs.  One of the Contributors at Book Drum,, Maeve Grant, has created a wonderful multimedia profile of the book.

The multimedia profile on the Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck, contributed by Maeve Grant, really is impressive and contains images from all parts of America that pertains to each and every chapter of the book.  From Oklahoma to Winchester rifles, she took great care in assembling the pictures, displaying them with descriptive paragraphs of what the pictures mean and, on some occasions, how it comes into play in the book.  From my perspective, it’s nearly a multimedia profile combining the literature of that masterpiece, notwithstanding how she neatly classifies it by chapters.  Now that IS impressively patient !!


Right now Im hot with fever and my wife’s nagging me to go to bed but hey, you call this addictive blogging ! When it comes to my blogs, it’s hard, really hard to stop me from writing something, even a line 😉

You’ve seen American Beauty? American Psycho? American Pie? Now I urge those who haven’t read this to please read it and know the real meaning of American Pain..

The Grapes of Wrath IS the American Pain

A real big thanks to Mark Negus, who is the official webmaster of
For more information please visit the website:
For more information about the Grapes of Wrath, please visit the page:

Learning Guitar, the first day…

That first day…

The first day of learning guitar will be, for some students, an exciting journey of knowing the magic of playing a tune, whilst for others, it’ll be a black eye two hours of obstacles and wanting to give up banging the guitar on the edge of your wall HAHAHA

That was not funny, cos it’s quite an investment nowadays, a good guitar; it might cost around Rs. 5000 (MUR) a good Yamaha, Taurus is not bad either (you just have to tune the Taurus every day before you play it, so enter the electric guitar tuner – there’ the manual one too, depends on you) You get good guitars at Venpin Rose-Hill and Columbia at Quatre-Bornes; I recommend this to all of my students: the rest I don’t know. When it comes to me, in terms of quality and affordability, these two are the best places for buying a good guitar to start learning.

Do Re Mi…

Fa Sol La Si are the seven notes to master before you do anything else, especially when you will be accompanying someone or singing it all by yourself. There are a variety of ways to play the notes, it depends on you and on how you want it being played.

The Guitar Posture

It’s the way you will hold your guitar. ACHTUNG! It’s your lady, your Madame Adoré, Your Amore Mio, so hold it well, the way it should be.

For me, is the most important thing to take control. I lay a lot of emphasis on the body posture. And this not only applies to playing acoustic guitar, this applies everywhere. I’m not telling to take the guitar posture to type something on your keyboard for God’s sake, I’m talking about what is the right posture to take when you tackle any instrument, a body posture for each instrument. So there is one for the guitar as well.

The back of the guitar body has been created and conceived to be laid on the knees, so lay in on your knees, gently, all the time. This is not hardcore after-party sex.

Your hand should be adjacent to the guitar’s soundhole so you can riff out tunes with your mediator to burp it out maximum. The soundhole is in fact the amplifier of the acoustic guitar.

You might note that many electric guitars do not have soundholes. That’s because they don’t need one, since the riffs you’ll gag out are being reproduced through an electric amplifier (that’s a pleonasm here – electric amplifier – but i have to say it, since i used the word amplify figuratively just above)

The Rule of Thumb

The way you place your thumb at the back of the guitar is important since the thumb will tell how the other fingers automatically position themselves on the inlays and the frets of the fretboard.
WOW, that’s quite rare I’m using technical terms like this, but I have to say it though, I have no choice. You must ask your guitar tutor for more detail

The Right Hand

is the one that will hold your mediator and riff out tunes. Sometimes, it’s quite savvy and kewl to pick the notes the tips of the right hand; try it and see for yourself.

The Frets and Inlays

will be where you will use the left fingers, except the thumb. Since the thumb will be used as the saddle, pivot and slider at the back, the fingers have to be placed properly on the inlays and not on the frets to create melodious tunes

The Tempo

is very important to create a beat so that you don’t play too fast or too slow. When guitarists usually play, especially in bands, you can see their left foot (or right) thumping the ground constantly for harmonious beats with their other peers. Try to do the same as well

There are of course other aspects to learn when you start playing guitar, and they slowly come with time. The more you practise, the more you will be exposed to it and exposure creates familiarity and drastically increased the learning curve. In no time, you’ll be John Lennon crying out Yesterday to your girlfriend (now what is that cacophony, she’ll say oh well) at the back of her window pane

The first tabs

Here goes out the tabs for C, D, E and F respectively:
If you consider the index finger to be number 1, then the next two fingers that follow will simply increment, stopping till 3 at this moment
C: 5.3.3, 4.2.2, 2.1.1
D: 1.2.3, 2.3.2, 3.2.1
E: 5.2.2, 4.2.3, 3.1.1
F: 4.3.3, 3.2.2, 2.1.1, 1.1.1

The F chord will have your index finger pressing the 2 inlays together, hence the same number for the two notes.

Enjoy ! I’ll post some links when I come around to it !

Equatorlounge Networks - Learn Guitar First time

Equatorlounge Networks - Learn Guitar First time

CSS tips and tricks

As integrators pave their way along their regular tasks of integrating what designers build, there are some regular things that they have to bear in mind, some of which are explicit but oh well, I thought it would be a good thing to write about the basics.  And So I Say:

No Empty Divs

Use text-indents in hyperlinks for images and images background so that the div does not remain empty

Even if you have a division marker that contains a backgrounds and is embedding another inner-container (or any other reason), use a text-indent:-9999px so that it does not appear empty.  This misuse has led to many misinterpretations by search engines

Validate your codes on W3C

Even if there is a warning, there’s always this possibility to wipe it out and write the right piece of code for it.

No Ids! Classes & inheritance

We’re in 2010 now ladies, things have changed and now it’s the new era.  Like for me, it was quite a bite that day I got those slaps (uhh… let’s call that e-slaps for the sake of this article) from my boss, who clearly mentioned the important generic methodologies of using inheritance techniques in everything we do… And that included CSS my oh my..

Besides, even if you are using ids, make sure that they are unique and that they are not being duplicated elsewhere on your page.  That’s the good thing with the W3C validator: it doesn’t miss those

Comment your lines of codes

There are many advantages for this, the major one I’m considering is to help situate the programmer in line who will be taking your codes elsewhere.  It’s a form of diplomacy, hence good practice.

No Styling in your html pages: out!

It’s better to transfer all the related style, with comments alongside on your generic style sheet

Insert Images on web pages only if necessary

Whenever there is an opportunity not to insert an image as an <img src>, do it; the best practice is to load it as a background image and if possible use write any text that’s ever found on the image instead of importing the image from photoshop or any app you’re using down to tyou

Anti-aliasing of gif images for better image quality

I have this luck of having a chief who knows quite a sleek stuffs in photoshop and image rendering techniques and that includes gif images.

Integrators love gifs: light, minimal use of colors.. when they’res no curves in any way, but what about transparency ?

There are possibilities to avoid the use of pngs, which are usually heavier and take quite some time to load.  Sometimes when gifs are being exported, codes or designers forget the background image on which the gif will be laid onto.  That is why anti-aliasing techniques are very important for keeping the design intact.

use overflow: hidden instead of clear:both

More information can be found on this link:
To brief a bit, using clear is like ol’ school teaching stuff which was the fast-driven solution while the overflow:hidden seems to satisfy the major browsers like MSIE, FFx , Chrome, etc…

Minimise the use of style sheets

Avoid using different style sheets for different browsers. Use one generic style sheet,  unless you have different themes for different pages, but that depends.   All this creates confusion and that might also mean you are not be using the right html codes and the right css styles

To minimise the use of multiple style sheets, use:
i.e. <!–[if IE 6]><div id=”IE6″><![endif]–>

Validate your css codes on

Jigsaw is the CSS passport for integrators.  I never knew it, but now O I know !

It’s the haven.  The hide in our line of business.  It’s what keeps our ego hmmm strong and heavily proud, the reason why integrators are so needed in the web business.

* Squeak *

Always have this final habit to validate your css in the following link to make sure that you are in line with your css standards.  Even if there are warnings, that would mean you are wrongly interpreting your css codes or that some styles have been duplicated here and there.


That’s all for now folks.  I think , whenever I’ll have some more time, I’d probably create a CSS tips and tricks Part 2, cos amending what’s already there would sound so cheap and it’s not like facebook, uhh Sheran changed that article, etc..

It’s good to have some feedbacks and all, well, that’s probably interesting to know what’s out in the CSS jungle, so jot in some lines, criticise, be blunt and bold and don’t hesitate to contact me (except ma okes at work, you know who you are, ladies) for any info ya need

À La Prochaine !